When you’re writing the first draft of your personal statement you don’t need to worry about the structure. Your second draft is the time to start introducing a structure to your personal statement and thinking about the impression it will make on the admissions tutor that reads it.
The most common way that a personal statement is presented is in an essay style as this is the style most people are comfortable writing in. However, as long as your personal statement says everything it needs to say in a succinct, well thought out, and easily understood way you can use any style you like.
You’ll need to spend roughly 50% of your personal statement talking about how you’re suited to your course and roughly 50% discussing your work experience and extra-curricular activities.
However, this is only a rough guide and the balance will change depending on which degree course you’re applying for.
In the first paragraph you need to tell the reader which subject you want to study and why. This part of your personal statement needs to grab the reader’s attention and make them want to read your personal statement properly and not just skim over it.
In the middle of your personal statement you’ll need to talk about your education, work experience, and any extra-curricular activities that have given you the skills and knowledge to do well in your subject.
This is the time to prove to the university admissions tutor that you’ve got what it takes to do well in your course and that you’re the right student for their university.
Towards the end of your personal statement you can also talk about what your hobbies and interests outside of education are. These don’t have to directly relate to your course but if they have given you any useful skills or personal attributes then you should mention it.
The final part of your personal statement is what’s going to make the admissions tutor remember you, so don’t give up just because you think you’ve said everything you need to say.